Release Models

Release Models

Development in OpenStack is organized around 6-month cycles (like “kilo”). At the end of every 6-month cycle, a synchronized release of all OpenStack components is produced, along with a common stable branch, providing a convenient reference point for downstream teams (stable branch maintenance, vulnerability management) and downstream users (in particular packagers of OpenStack distributions).

Most deliverables follow the cycle. If their “final” release is their only release of the development cycle, they can produce release candidates in the final stages of the release cycle (cycle-with-rc release model). Otherwise they can opt to release directly and whenever appropriate (cycle-with-intermediary release model).

The deadline for producing this “final” release varies depending on the type of the deliverable. In a development cycle, non-client libraries (“library” type) are first, then client libraries (“client-library” type), then services and other main deliverables (“service” and “other” types), then release-trailing deliverables (“trailing” type).

Finally, some deliverables that are generally useful and not strictly tied to the OpenStack development cycle can release independently from it using the independent release model.

A number of rules apply based on what the deliverable is and which bucket of the OpenStack map it falls in:

cycle-with-rc

The “cycle-with-rc” model describes projects that produce a single release at the end of the cycle, with one or more release candidates (RC) close to the end of the cycle and optional development milestone betas published on a per-project need.

  • “cycle-with-rc” projects commit to publish at least one release candidate following a predetermined schedule published by the Release Management team before the start of the cycle.

  • “cycle-with-rc” projects commit to produce a release to match the end of the development cycle.

  • Release tags for deliverables using this tag are reviewed and applied by the Release Management team.

cycle-with-intermediary

The “cycle-with-intermediary” model describes projects that produce multiple full releases during the development cycle, with a final release to match the end of the cycle.

  • “cycle-with-intermediary” projects commit to produce a release near the end of the 6-month development cycle to be used with projects using the other cycle-based release models that are required to produce a release at that time.

  • Release tags for deliverables using this tag are reviewed and applied by the Release Management team.

independent

Some projects opt to completely bypass the 6-month cycle and release independently. For example, that is the case of projects that support the development infrastructure. The “independent” model describes such projects.

  • “independent” projects produce releases from time to time.

  • Release tags for deliverables using this tag are managed without oversight from the Release Management team.

abandoned

As time passes, some deliverables are abandoned, as they are no longer useful, or their functionality is absorbed by another deliverable. For cycle-tied release models they just disappear in the next cycle. However deliverables with a cycle-independent model just stay around.

The ‘abandoned’ release model describes a formally-independent deliverable that will no longer be released, because it changed release models or because it was abandoned.

  • “abandoned” deliverables never produce new releases.

untagged

Some CI tools are used only from source and never tag releases, but need to create stable branches.

Transition between release models

Legacy release models

Those models were available in previous development cycles, but were replaced or abandoned.

cycle-trailing

Note

The cycle-trailing release model has been replaced by a specific “trailing” deliverable type that can be applied to cycle-with-rc or cycle-with-intermediary release models.

The “cycle-trailing” model was used by projects producing OpenStack packaging, installation recipes or lifecycle management tools. Those still do one release for every development cycle, but they can’t release until OpenStack itself is released.

  • “cycle-trailing” projects commit to produce a release no later than 3 months after the main release.

  • Release tags for deliverables using this tag are reviewed and applied by the Release Management team.

cycle-automatic

Note

The cycle-automatic release model is now better described by the cycle-with-intermediary model combined with stable-branch-type: none

The “cycle-automatic” model is used by specific technical deliverables that need to be automatically released once at the end of a cycle. Those may, optionally, also be released in the middle of the cycle. Those do not need a stable branch created. This may be applied only to “tempest-plugin” or “other” deliverables.

  • “cycle-automatic” deliverables will be automatically released by the release team once at the end of a cycle, using the current HEAD of the repository. No stable branch will be automatically created.

  • Release tags for deliverables using this model are reviewed and applied by the Release Management team.

cycle-with-milestones

Note

The cycle-with-milestones release model has been replaced by the cycle-with-rc model.

The “cycle-with-milestones” model described projects that produced a single release at the end of the cycle, with development milestones published at predetermined times in the cycle schedule.

  • “cycle-with-milestones” projects committed to publish development milestones following a predetermined schedule published by the Release Management team before the start of the 6-month cycle.

  • “cycle-with-milestones” projects committed to produce a release to match the end of the 6-month development cycle.

  • Release tags for deliverables using this tag were reviewed and applied by the Release Management team.

  • Projects using milestones were expected to tag at least 2 out of the 3 for each cycle, or risk being dropped as an official project. The release team would remind projects that miss the first milestone, and create tags on any later milestones for the project team by tagging HEAD at the time of the deadline. If the release team force-created 2 tags for a project in the same given development cycle, the project would be treated as inactive and the release team would recommend dropping it from the official project list.

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